Inch By Inch Is A Cinch

I talk to my mother via Skype nearly every morning.
During a recent conversation, she pressed two dumbbells overhead.

1. 2. 3...

“Wow!” I exclaimed.

She kept pressing. 4. 5…

“Look at you!” I said.

“I didn’t used to be able to do this with my right arm,” she said. “I needed my left hand to help.” She then set down the dumbbell in her left hand and showed how she *used* to assist her right arm.

“But now I can.” She returned to pressing both.
She told me she recently decided to leave her dumbbells out in her office. Every time she walked by them, she did some presses. Then she returned to her tasks. She did this every day until eventually she pressed the dumbbells easily.

“Looks like you need heavier weights,” I said.

She said nothing, kept pressing.

Strength building doesn’t have to be challenging or separate from the rest of your life. It can be easy and seamless.

Beyond the dumbbells, my mom didn’t buy a lot of special gear. She didn’t set aside an hour, change her clothes or drive to a gym. She got stronger in her home office, in workday clothes, one press at a time.

Inch by inch is a cinch. It requires a certain bravery to trust this, to know that something ~ a novel, stronger legs ~ can be created in an easy way.

We torture ourselves. We believe fast and furious is the way to achieve. It’s not.

What do you want to do? Paint a mural? Learn a dance routine? Perform a pull up?

Do some work toward this every day: One stroke. One step. One 30-second hang.

Work like a metronome, steady, predictable. Keep your body peaceful, your mind soft. Do some work now. Do more later, but just a little.

Do it again tomorrow.